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A while back, in reference to an all-too-familiar kind of translation request, I suggested adding some warnings to would-be questioners that clarifies where such translation requests should be directed:

can we establish a subreddit for these kinds of requests? And or get the site to automatically flash a suggestion to redirect the request elsewhere when it detects words like "translate" or "translation" coming from people with below X reputation.

It looks like the subreddit is alive and well and already receiving many of the kind of "what does this say" questions that are not so welcome here as a matter of policy. So it makes good sense to redirect people to the subreddit via a suggestion popup that appears based on presence of words/phrases such as "translate/translation/what does this say", but without needlessly scaring off too many would-be new members of this stack exchange. How to balance these competing concerns?

I would estimate roughly 80-90% of the "what does this say?" crowd are either first-time or very junior users with, say, less than 50 reputation on the site. Is it possible to use the StackExchange API to perform this keyword detection and popup only if whoever's posing the question either has reputation of less than 50 or is posting as an anonymous / guest user? The idea being that any user with more than 50 reputation is familiar enough with the "culture" of the StackExchange not to pose such questions at all, or at least pose them in a way that is interesting enough to represent value-added for the site.

Don't know, however, whether the StackExchange API can do this kind of conditional alerting or it would require new features in the engine? Is the use case compelling enough to merit looking into this further, or are we OK with continuing to nag people after they submit translation questions, when the "damage" is already done?

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  • Usually these kind of posts also have an attached image also, it should be pretty easy to detect. – Mou某 Mar 17 '15 at 9:02

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